Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Allout.org: Homophobia? There's an app for that!

Alright, this one definitely comes under the heading of "What Was This Idiot Thinking?". I've done a bit of research of the creator of this app, currently available in the Android appstore, and he doesn't seem to be homophobic: in fact, he may be gay himself. He is several sandwiches short of a picnic in terms of realising how much harm can be caused by putting a completely unscientific "survey" up for general access.

This is from Allout.org's online petition. Please sign it. We need to hammer it into Google's collective thick skull that potentially harmful rubbish like this (they've only just pulled a "Jewish or not?" app!) shouldn't make it into the store in the first place.
Google's Android Marketplace is selling smartphone owners of all ages an app which promises to answer what they think is a pressing question: "Is My Son Gay?"

If we alert the Google team to this outrageous questionnaire, we're sure they'll do the right thing and shut it down. 
READ THEIR 20 QUESTIONS
  1. Before he was born, did you wish for a girl?
  2. Has he ever been in a fight?
  3. Does he read the sports page in the newspaper?
  4. Is his best friend a girl?
  5. Does he like team sports?
  6. Is he modest?
  7. Is he a fan of divas (Madonna, Britney Spears)?
  8. Does he spend a long time in the bathroom?
  9. Does he piercings in his tongue, nose or ears?
  10. Do you wonder about your son's sexual orientation?
  11. Are you divorced?
  12. Does he like musical comedies?
  13. Has he ever introduced you to a girlfriend?
  14. Is his father a very authoritarian person?
  15. Within your family, is the father absent at all?
  16. During his childhood, was he timid or discreet?
  17. Does he have a complicated relationship with his father?
  18. Does he take a long time to do his hair?
  19. Does he like to dress well: is he very careful when choosing his outfits and selecting brands?
  20. Does he like football?
If you're wondering what any of these questions have to do with being gay, then so am I.
Please sign the petition.

UPDATE: Success! Dumb app withdrawn

Thursday, 22 September 2011

I defy you to remain unmoved

Don't ask Don't tell came to an end at long last. It will not be missed.

Towleroad has a video a soldier made of himself coming out to his dad. Nail biting stuff a lot of us have gone through, or have ahead of us

No spoilers, except that he seems like a really sweet guy.

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Australia’s New Transgender Passport Policy

M, F or X?
Well, it's probably better than the '?' assigned to freemartins in Aldous Huxley's Brave New World. Then again, it's just replacing one character with another, and the whole transgender issue is far more complex than the notion of a 'third sex'.

Still, it's a good start, and it would certainly make the prospect of going through airport scanners or security searches a little less daunting. Here's the article that caught my eye:

Why Australia’s New Transgender Passport Policy Should Be A Model For The World | ThinkProgress:

'via Blog this'

They go to die

Most people own a little gold: jewellery, gilded ceramics, computers. South Africa is currently the third largest producer of gold in the world. So there's a good chance you own some South African gold. And that therefore, in some way, you benefit from the appalling treatment meted out on a regular basis to these men.

Yes, it shocked me too. I had no idea things were still this bad, despite apartheid being long dead. Of course, we still live in a world where bigots are happy to applaud Rick Perry for signing 234 execution warrants and would happily let someone die because they can't afford expensive health insurance.

An epidemiologist has lived with, and studied, these people. He wants to help them by bringing their plight to wider public attention. You can help in this.
They Go to Die is a documentary film-in-progress that surfaces issues of health, human rights, and legal complexities of TB and HIV in the gold mining industry of South Africa nonlinearly though the context of life, love, and family.
It follows four men that were sent home due to contracting TB in the mines and left with no access to medication. Though the men in the film that did not have access to care eventually succumbed to their illnesses and passed away, the film does not focus on their death, but rather the life that this process (termed 'sending them home to die') has taken away. They Go to Die is ultimately a story of humanity – a celebration of family and the power of relationships.



Official website
Another epidemiologist's take on the problem
State of funding so far (click on the widget to donate, even as little as $1).

Friday, 16 September 2011

Go ahead, make my gay

"These people who are making a big deal out of gay marriage?" Clint Eastwood opined. "I don't give a fuck about who wants to get married to anybody else! Why not?! We're making a big deal out of things we shouldn't be making a deal out of."

"They go on and on with all this bullshit about 'sanctity' -- don't give me that sanctity crap! Just give everybody the chance to have the life they want."

Remember everybody, each fuck not given about other peoples' consensual adult relationships is a fuck saved for something that matters.

Thursday, 15 September 2011

I never thought I'd cheer a Fox News anchor

There's been all sorts of ignorant nonsense written about Chaz Bono, because he's transgender and appearing on a reality TV show.

Fox News is a TV channel not noted for its intelligent coverage, or even tolerance, but anchor Megyn Fox is definitely the exception proving the rule here. Watch her get increasingly annoyed as this idiot vomits up out the same intolerant bullshit that was previously applied to gays.



Seeing someone who's transgender, or gay, or female, or coloured on TV and being presented in a positive light isn't going to make anyone suddenly transgendered, gay, female or coloured. What it can do is help those who are understand themselves better and realise that they aren't monsters or mutants or maybe a bit crazy. That we don't need to hide away or be ashamed of ourselves. That we're not alone, even if we do feel like the odd ones out.

It can also help family and friends accept us more easily, with less personal recrimination along the lines of OMG-where-did-I-fail-as-a-parent.

Being trans is something you are, not what you choose to be. And that psychiatrist is about as clued-in on transgender as Marcus Bachmann is on teh gayz. Idiot. Arrogant, righteous, incompetent, loudmouthed idiot.

Article in Forbes
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